|Callum Wilson is the leading scorer at Newcastle but the Magpies will need more than just score to earn something when the Red Devils visit on Monday night. (Photo credit: Sky Sports)
Newcastle vs Manchester United
St. James’s Park
Manchester United have not played a premier league game since only God knows when and that might help them stay fresh ahead of their visit to troubled Newcastle.
Ralph Rangnick’s side managed back to back 1-0 wins, the
latter of that was against bottom club Norwich City and Newcastle on paper isn’t
the ideal test for a team that is farther off the top of the league currently
occupied by United’s City rivals.
Newcastle can be hopeful of survival especially if they
look at surrounding teams and the margin they need to close, back to back wins
and they’re out of the drop zone, you have a feeling that with solid
reinforcements in January, Newcastle will be just fine.
Manchester United isn’t a team you like to play anywhere
at any time, they blow hot and cold but all they need is one moment of magic
from one of their stars and you’re in trouble, and for Newcastle that concede
freely, it could be a very long afternoon for Eddie Howe and co.
Newcastle are second from bottom, it’s even rather gloomy
if you consider that they have played three times more than Burnley who sit one
point above them and twice more than Watford who’s just outside the drop zone,
their redemption starts from here.
The visitors have won each of the last four between these
two by an identical free scoring results, two 4-1 wins and two 3-1 wins will
make Newcastle fans cringe, but can rustiness set in considering the Red Devils
haven’t played in a long while?
Eddie Howe will set up his team to be expressive, he’s a
fearless manager but as we saw his team against Manchester City where they
shipped four, their defending left too much to be desired and could even have
been worse if not for some heroic goalkeeping.
There’s a thin line between being brave and being stupid,
Howe has to block the leakages at the back, none of the current set up,
including club captain Jamaal Lascelles is doing justice to defending, January
can’t come too soon.
Rangnick will probably manage his squad but he’s well
aware that Anthony Martial wants to leave in January, no point giving minutes
to a player that doesn’t want to be here, but how can he find suitors if he
doesn’t display him?
Newcastle will celebrate a point but the visitors will
know it’s dangerous to leave Tyneside without the three points as they’re now
far off Arsenal in fourth albeit with two extra games in hand after negotiating
Newcastle on Monday night.